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Port of Rotterdam introduces legislative amendments

LNG Industry,

Seagoing vessels can now legally bunker LNG in the port of Rotterdam. Before yesterday, this could only be done by inland shipping in the Seinehaven. The Municipality of Rotterdam amended the Rotterdam Port Management Bye-laws, taking on the proposals of the Port of Rotterdam Authority Harbour Master.

The legislative amendment is set to encourage the use of LNG as shipping fuel, which is more economically viable and eco-friendly than fuel oil traditionally used. The Port of Rotterdam said that it expected many other ports to follow its example.

The legislative amendment is part of the Port of Rotterdam Authority’s incentive to promote the use of LNG as shipping fuel and become a leading LNG hub. The Port Authority previously supported an initiative of Gate, the Port of Rotterdam's LNG terminal, to open an LNG terminal on the Maasvlakte in 2011.

Facilities in the Seinehaven were opened last year allowing inland shipping to bunker LNG from an LNG tanker. The European Union (EU) supports these initiatives warmly. A subsidy of €40 million was awarded at the end of last year to stimulate the use of LNG as shipping fuel on European waters. This concerns the LNG Masterplan for Rhine-Main-Danube, in which the Port Authority plays an important coordinating role. The Dutch LNG Platform also supports the use of LNG by trucks, inland and seagoing shipping.


The Port Authority has worked with other ports over the past two years to achieve a legislative amendment that enables LNG-fuelled vessels to bunker from an LNG bunkering vessel. “That was a major condition of the general introduction of LNG,” according to Harbour Master René de Vries. “In the ten hours they stay in the port of Rotterdam, container ships should be able to bunker at the same time as they transfer cargo. This is only possible, if it happens ship-to-ship. And that is now possible.” The new rules also imply that LNG may only be bunkered at designated locations within the Municipality of Rotterdam. The legislation is based on national and international safety studies and laws and regulations, standards and best practice guidelines of other ports.

Adapted from press release by Ted Monroe

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